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Reel Talk

Panel Discussion

Saturday June 8th  Time:1:35 - 3:20 pm

Venue: The Figge Art Museum

(John Deere Auditorium )

(563) 326-7804, 225 W. 2nd St., Davenport, IA 52801

Reclaiming Narratives: The Journey and Future of Black Independent Filmmakers

Jonathan Burnett, an independent filmmaker and educator from Rock Island, Illinois, now resides in Los Angeles. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Academy of Art University and a Master of Fine Arts from Loyola Marymount University. Jonathan has written, directed, produced, and filmed numerous projects. His work spans international borders, including France and Algeria, and U.S. cities like Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, the Pacific Northwest, New York City, and Los Angeles.


His thesis film, "Smoke & Mirrors," was showcased in nine U.S. festivals, winning "Best Short Film" and "Best Student Film" at the Alternating Currents Film Festival in Davenport, Iowa.

Brandon Wilkerson recently received his Master's in Film from Howard University in May 2023. He is originally from Beacon, NY, located 60 miles north of Manhattan. Brandon has wanted to create films since he was 14. He stopped growing that year, so the NBA seemed unlikely, but come Black History Month, he did a report on Spike Lee, and since then, he has been chasing this dream. Brandon is very much into Sci-Fi and action. He has been a Trekkie since he was 9, thanks to his older brother.

Kevin Coleman-Cohen is an awarding winning filmmaker. Kevin has a Master of Fine Arts in Directing from the American Film Institute (AFI) and a Bachelor of Arts with an emphasis in television and film from Howard University. He received an Honorary Doctorate from Harvest Christian University in Entertainment & Arts Management for his work in independent filmmaking and his innovation and visionary creativity. In November 2023, Kevin received the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from President Joe Biden for his work in building a stronger community through service. 

Reginald J. Rice is an emerging writer, historian, branding analysis, and filmmaker from the South Side of Chicago. Also, he is the president and creative director of FeelSoReel Productions L.L.C. (Functional Engaging Enchanting Legitimate Spontaneous Original Reel). His short films/ documentaries are heavily influenced by life in the city, moral dilemmas, and dismantling invisible walls that divide class and cultures. 


While growing up in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood, Reginald began to see what was aesthetically pleasing about what most people consider undesirable and gritty. This change in perspective laid the foundation for Reginald’s journey into learning about the storytelling art form. Today, Reginald is graduate student of Intellectual History. 

Maximina Juson is an award-winning filmmaker and founder of HUMovies, a film and video production company based in Los Angeles. Her debut feature film, "One Person, One Vote?" is a National Endowment for the Humanities grant recipient that world premiered at The 2024 Pan African Film Festival, taking home the Programmer's Award for Best Documentary Feature.   


In 2018, she produced Harlem Rising for The Harlem Children’s Zone. The documentary, drawing upon 30 years of archival footage, is a history of the organization’s efforts to “break the cycle of generational poverty” for Harlem families. 

An activist Filmmaker, DIRECTOR Victorious De Costa has dedicated his life to providing social service both local & abroad. De Costa is the Director of Digging for Weldon Irvine,
a music-centered documentary that focused on the joint paradigms of Artist Identity, Mental Wellness & Suicide Awareness.


De Costa was also a producer of Yusuf Hawkins: Storm Over Brooklyn (HBO Max), a documentary that was spotlighted at the Tribeca Film Festival and nominated for an NAACP image award in 2021.

Charles A. Honeywood is a Writer/Director from Chicago, raised in the city’s southside where beauty and violence fueled his creative outlook on the world. Charles is a fluent English speaker with a background in spoken word. He learned the art of filmmaking through the Script to Silver Screen initiative, a production alliance dedicated to providing the programming, development and production resources that helps independent writers and filmmakers carve a path to film production.


Thanks to his talent for writing engaging stories that connect with audiences with the very first read, Charles utilized screenwriting as the vehicle to teach himself to direct his first short film. As a result, he was awarded empowerment short in the Tokyo International Film festival.

Cam Be is a film director, photographer, musician, DJ and music producer. His central passion for filmmaking emerged during his studies at New York Film Academy (2006) and Columbia College in Chicago (2008-2010).

In 2012 Cam received an Emmy award for his role as producer with NBC Chicago. His first feature length documentary "The Exchange" is available online at Amazon Video. His short documentary "Where Flowers Bloom," the making of the Grammy Nominated Hip-Hop album 'Laila's Wisdom' by Rapsody was released on Tidal in 2018.

Meet The Panel

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